Rajma Masala for Comfort

Sometimes you try something new, not knowing what to expect, praying it will work, and keeping you fingers crossed that the family will eat it and feel satisfied and maybe even excited. 
Last week I tried to make a Brazilian dish in the slow cooker. It went horribly wrong. My keiki wasn’t afraid to tell me it was bad either. I love/dislike that. 

The Rajma Masala recipe I used here came from the, Framed Recipes site: http://www.framedrecipes.com/slow-cooker-rajma-masala-bowl/.

 I had to make a few changes based on what I had at the last minute. Using the adzuki beans in place of Kidney beans was well worth te risk. Adzuki beans are much sweeter than Kidney beans, and with the addition of sweet potato I was pretty nervous it was going to be overly sweet. I wasn’t the only one who had that thought either. But it didn’t turn out sweet, thanks probably to the Chipotle peppers I used. Their smokey spicy flavor muted the sweetness. I was really happy with how it turned out. I served the curry over rice and added half an avocado, yogurt and chopped almonds to the top!  


2 1/2 C. Cooked Adzuki Beans (or kidney beans as is traditional)

1 onion, diced

8 cloves garlic, minced

2 inch piece of ginger, chopped 

1 full cinnamon stick 

2 dried, mild to medium Chipotle peppers (mine were smoked which lender a nice flavor)

1 bay leaf

4 cloves

1 Tbs cumin seeds

1 tsp. Cayenne pepper, ground

2 tsp. Garam Masala 

2 Tbs. Smoked Paprika

2 tsp. Turmeric 

2 sweet potato, diced

1- 2 Tbs.Lime juice

Salt and pepper to taste

3-4 Cups water

Garnish: yogurt (Greek style), cilantro, avocado, almonds, lime wedhe’s, pan fried chicken


Place all ingredients into slow cooker, cook on low for 8 hours. Before serving remove cinnamon stick and pulse an immersion blender through to break down beans and potato to thicken a little. Serve over rice and garnish!


This Spot

There’s this spot in the kitchen, right next to the door. A little wooden foot stool sits next to the doorway. I’ve sat in this spot for 5 years. The spot that was my kitchen nursing area. The spot that was my seat to play next to my baby while I cooked. The spot where I’ve watched people coming and going, dancing, drinking, kissing, hugging, fighting, crying, contemplating, pacing and growing. This spot has been my way of knowing the men were home for dinner. My way of knowing how many teenagers, roughly, we’re about to be congregating. My way of knowing my sister in law’s bike was moving in or out. My way of knowing if my keiki was awake, crying, playing, or climbing up the stairs. I’ve sat in this spot and thought about how many other places there are to sit. Couches, chairs, the floor…none seem as “safe” or as desirable as this spot by the door. I’ve sat alone in an empty house, at this spot and thought about how I could be taking a bath, painting, sewing, lounging if I wanted-but I don’t. I just sit. At this spot. Waiting sometimes, for my keiki to be done with school. Waiting to be needed. Feeling like this spot right here is the best spot, the only spot. 5 year’s sitting harmoniously with this little wooden footstool in this spot. Scooching, holding, admiring, consulting, drinking, thinking, planning, dreaming, loving, living and beginning, from this spot.